Durban - Four men and a woman linked to a mob justice attack in which the victims were beaten and forced to drink acid, have been granted bail.
Philani Zungu (age not confirmed), Mthobeli Mchunu, 23, Mthokozisi Radebe, 25, Xolani Radebe, 23, and Nokwazi Mthembu, 24, were facing two counts of murder and one of kidnapping at the Umlazi Magistrate’s Court yesterday.
Two young Umlazi men,
Njabulo Mwandla, 20, and Ngcebo Dube, 22, were assaulted for about 10 hours by men who suspected them of stealing a braai stand and boots from one of their yards.
Reading from the five’s affidavits in court, their attorney, Griffiths Madonsela, said his clients had co-operated with the police during their arrests and were not flight risks.
He said that they had all handed themselves over to the police on January 25.
Madonsela also said that all five accused intended pleading not guilty to all charges and would reserve their reasons for the “appropriate time”.
Reading from the affidavit, Madonsela said that Zungu was a businessman and the survival of his close corporation depended on him being granted bail.
Mchunu was getting ready to write his supplementary exams and needed to be granted bail.
Mthokozisi Radebe had heard he was being sought by the police and had gone to the nearest police station, where he had been arrested, Madonsela said.
Each of the accused was granted R2 000 bail on condition they have no communication with any of the state witnesses, that they report to their nearest police station twice a week and that they do not change their address without permission from the investigating officer.
The matter was adjourned to February 22 for further investigation.